The demerit point scheme in New South Wales is regulated by Part 3.2 of the Road Transport Act 2013, and its related regulations.
How many demerit points do I have to accrue before I am suspended from driving?
The law states that a driver will have their licence suspended if he or she accrues a specific number of demerit points within a three year period.
The number of points relating to each licence type are as follows:
- Unrestricted licence: 13 points
- Professional driver: 14 points
- Provisional P2 licence: 7 points
- Provisional P1 licence: 4 points
- Learner licence: 4 points
How long will I be suspended if I accrue these points?
Section 33 of the Act prescribes the following periods of suspension in the event demerit points are accrued or exceeded:
|Number of demerit points incurred within previous 3 years||Period of licence suspension|
|13 (or 14 in the case of a professional driver) to 15||3 months|
|16 to 19||4 months|
|20 or more||5 months|
Can I elect to have a good behaviour licence?
This licence lasts for a period of 12 months.
If a driver accrues two or more demerit points while on a good behaviour licence, he or she will be suspended from driving in accordance with the following table:
|Demerit Points||Original Suspension||Suspension for a breach on a good behaviour licence|
|13 to 15||3 months||6 months|
|16 to 19||4 months||8 months|
|20 or more||5 months||10 months|
Are my demerit points deleted when I am suspended from driving for excessive demerit points?
Division 2 of Part 3.2 of the Act relates to full licence holders who incur demerit points.
Section 37(1)(a) of the Act, will falls within that Division, provides that all demerit points are deleted in respect of a full licence holder on commencement of any suspension for excessive demerit points.
And while, needless to say, a person should not be driving whilst suspended, section 37(3) makes clear that any demerit points incurred during the suspension period remain in place.
This rule also applies to demerit points incurred after the receipt of a notice of licence suspension.
Division 3 of Part 3.2 of the Act relates to learner and provisional licence holder who incur demerit points.
Section 41A(1)(a) in that Division states that all demerit points are deleted for a learner or provisional licence holder on the commencement of any period of suspension for excessive demerit points.
Section 41(1)(c) stipulates that demerit points are also deleted upon the determination of such a licence holder’s driver licence appeal.
Are my demerit points deleted when I elect to take a good behaviour licence?
Section 37(1)(c) of the Act provides that all demerit points are deleted on the commencement of the period of a good behaviour licence.
Are my demerit points deleted when a court disqualifies me from driving?
A disqualification from driving is a court-imposed penalty.
Disqualifications can be imposed for what are known as major traffic offences, such as drink driving, drug driving, reckless driving, dangerous driving and the like.
Existing demerit points are not deleted upon being disqualified from driving.
However, the operation of the ‘double jeopardy’ provision contained in section 181 of the Act means that a driver cannot be both disqualified from driving by a court and receive demerit points for the one specific offence.
Are my demerit points deleted when I am given an immediate licence suspension?
Immediate licence suspension can be imposed for a number of offences, such as speeding by more than 30km/h (3 months) and speeding by more than 45km/h (6 months).
In these cases, existing demerit points are not deleted but – again – the operation of section 181 means that a driver cannot be suspended and also receive demerit points for one specific offence.
Going to court for a traffic offence?
If you are going to court over a traffic offence, call Sydney Criminal Lawyers anytime on (02) 9261 8881 for expert advice and formidable representation by one of our experienced Sydney traffic lawyers.
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